Tarot books are essential guides for beginners and more experienced tarot students.
These guides teach the principles and meaning of the various cards you can find in a tarot deck. Tarot decks usually have 78 cards, from minor to major arcana.
Tarot books show you the traditions and meaning of the cards and the interpretation of each author.
If you want to start reading cards, then a tarot book is one of the first steps to take.
They provide the knowledge necessary to begin your journey or to master new skills.
In today’s guide, we’ll look at the best tarot books on the market.
We’ll also tell you all you need to know about major and minor arcana cards and the difference between oracle and tarot decks.
Winner: The Ultimate Guide to Tarot
- Pages: 240
- Author: Liz Dean
- Type: Digital, paperback, or spiral-bound
The Ultimate Guide to Tarot by Liz Dean is an excellent way to understand tarot’s principles, from the art of card reading and different layouts to the meaning and power of each card.
You’ll learn the difference between major and minor arcana and why it is essential during the process of reading cards.
Liz Dean also goes deeper into the history of tarot, from the myths and legends to the facts of tarot reading.
It is an excellent book if you want to learn the secrets of card reading or perfect your interpretation skills. Liz Dean’s book will give you all the necessary tools to understand symbols, numerology, and the kabbalah.
With this book, you’ll learn the three fundamental aspects of tarot: the meaning of each card, how you can lay them out, and putting your trust in the message
Liz Dean’s The Ultimate Guide to Tarot is, without a doubt, one of the best books for learning tarot.
The main drawback of this book is the editing. Many readers complain that there are grammar mistakes on almost every page, making it hard for them to concentrate on reading.
The Ultimate Guide to Tarot by Liz Dean offers an in-depth study of tarot’s history and techniques. But that’s not all.
This book also includes beautiful illustrations of cards, layouts, meanings, and astrology. So, if you are looking for a visual guide to the tarot, this is the book for you.
This is an excellent book to learn the meaning of tarot and the techniques required to practice it. However, if you are looking for a professionally edited book, then you should consider other options.
On the other hand, if you enjoy illustrations, you should try this book.
Runner-Up: How to Read Tarot – A Modern Guide
- Pages: 210
- Author: Jessica Wiggan
- Type: Paperback and digital
If you are new to a tarot reading, you should consider Jessica Wiggan’s How to Read Tarot.
The book goes into in-depth details about card reading, from basic knowledge to more advanced techniques. How to Read Tarot is, without a doubt, one of the best tarot books for beginners you’ll be able to find.
Jessica Wiggan’s book is a modern interpretation of tarot’s history and techniques.
Therefore, it is a lot more digestible for new readers thanks to its contemporary language and easy-to-read format.
Unlike many other tarot books, Wiggan’s How to Read Tarot focuses on letting beginners understand tarot’s principles.
With this book, you’ll be able to understand card reading for yourself and others, the meaning of each card and layout, and the interpretation of the spreads and significance of each position.
This book is excellent for beginners. However, more experienced tarot students won’t find much new in Jessica Wiggan’s book.
The main extra feature that this book offers is Wiggan’s three steps to understanding tarot.
She emphasizes the need to learn card meaning and layout interpretation through illustrations and easy-to-understand information.
The How to Read Tarot is the book for you if you are starting your tarot journey and need a guide for your first steps.
Alternative: Seventy-Eight Degrees of Wisdom
- Pages: 368
- Author: Rachel Pollack
- Type: Audiobook, Audio CD, hardcover, and paperback
Seventy-Eight Degrees of Wisdom by Rachel Pollack is one of the best-selling tarot books worldwide.
This book was published forty years ago and became an instant classic for the tarot community.
Many readers believe that the book by Rachel Pollack is the “bible of tarot.” It studies the history and skills needed.
This book goes deep into the tarot history, the most common tarot spreads, and it is a reference for beginner and experienced tarot readers.
Rachel Pollack’s book delves into the mythologies and the esoteric traditions of this art. By doing so, she hopes to inspire new tarot students in their journey.
Seventy-Eight Degrees of Wisdom is one of the best books on tarot for beginners and experienced students.
Although the book is an excellent option for more recent tarot students, it doesn’t provide a beginner’s tarot guide.
Instead, the author talks about her tarot experience and how she sees the art of card reading. So, if you are looking for a book that will guide your first steps, you should consider other options.
Unlike many other tarot books, Rachel Pollack’s book offers an interesting psychological interpretation of tarot archetypes.
So, if you want a more scientifically accurate text, we recommend Seventy-Eight Degrees of Wisdom.
The book is excellent if you are a fan of Rachell Pollack and her way of seeing tarot reading.
Alternative: The Easiest Way to Learn the Tarot
- Pages: 342
- Author: Dusty White
- Type: Digital and Paperback
The Easiest Way to Learn the Tarot is considered the definitive guide to tarot and its history.
The book by Dusty White offers a more interactive approach to tarot learning. Instead of just a card meaning book, The Easiest Way to Learn Tarot will guide you through detailed exercises as you learn to interpret the future.
Dusty White promises in his book to turn you into a professional tarot expert in less time than other books.
Here’s what you’ll learn with this book:
- You’ll learn the meaning of the cards every time you read them.
- You will also understand the many meanings of each card.
- Additionally, you’ll know how to spread the cards to get a reliable answer.
- You will also learn the best spread to use and how to use them.
- Finally, you’ll understand the meaning of tradition and the importance of intuition.
The main drawback of this book is that it does not follow the traditional readings of cards. It is a book that plays by its own rules, making it confusing for experienced readers.
The book does not offer many extra features. Still, the author claims that it will provide complete support for your learning, unlike other books.
You should consider this option if you are looking for a more straightforward book.
Alternative: Modern Tarot
- Pages: 400
- Author: Michelle Tea
- Type: Digital and paperback
Michelle Tea is a bestselling author of memoirs, but she worked and lived as a tarot reader before that.
Because of her knowledge and experience, she wrote Modern Tarot – Connecting With Your Higher Self Through the Wisdom of the Cards.
In her new book, Michelle Tea offers a unique perspective on tarot learning.
This book will show you Tea’s interpretation of tarot learning. It promises to guide you whether you are a beginner or an experienced student.
The book by Michelle Tea is more of her experience than it is a guide to tarot. Michelle Tea offers her perspective, but if you wish to take a more traditional approach, you should consider other options.
The book does not offer many extra features, but it does provide a unique perspective to tarot learning.
You should get this book if you are a fan of Michelle Tea. It will be an excellent addition to your collection.
Tarot Books FAQ
What Is the Most Powerful Tarot Card?
Although there is not one card to trump them all, many tarot deck cards are considered strong and powerful.
These cards are especially powerful in a Rider-Waite deck, which many consider the cards’ traditional order.
Six of Swords
This is a powerful card that means you are escaping from difficulties and moving on to a better moment of life.
This card urges you to stay strong and to withstand the pain because you’ll find happiness in it.
Seven of Wands
This card means that you will face adversity when trying to accomplish a dream or a goal.
If you can withstand that adversity, you’ll find out that your vision is closer to being fulfilled.
Eight of Cups
The eight of cups means that you will sacrifice something, and because of it, you’ll need to be strong.
Any kind of sacrifice requires you to be strong, and this type of sacrifice will need all your strength.
Nine of Wands
The nine of wands is another card that means one will face adversity soon and need to be strong. It means it is not time to give up just yet.
The Kings and Their Queens
These cards mean strength and courage, especially emotional stability to withstand different challenging moments.
This card signifies the power that a leader has during the most challenging adversities.
The emperor means power, but a power that is born from integrity, strength, and leadership.
An emperor card is all about leadership and doing what’s best for others, which is the principle of being a leader.
Are Tarot and Oracle Cards the Same?
Tarot and oracle cards are different because tarot and oracle are different reading techniques that seek different goals. Oracle seeks self-reflection on your magical and spiritual practice.
On the other hand, tarot cards provide insight into more complex situations, giving the cards the possibility of reading the future.
Additionally, there are set rules and traditions when reading tarot, which does not happen in oracle reading. Compared to tarot, oracle cards have fewer rules and restrictions.
There are around seven famous decks in oracle reading, and these decks and cards include messages from various entities.
For instance, during oracle reading, you could be reading the message from a goddess, a powerful witch, and even self-care tips. One more thing to consider is that oracle decks do not have a limit of cards.
Each person can use as many cards as they want depending on what they want to accomplish.
Here are the seven most common oracle decks:
- Archetype Cards
- The Literary Witches Oracle
- Sacred Rebels Oracle
- Goddess Power Oracle
- Rebel Deck: The Oracle With Attitude
- The Sacred Self-Care Oracle
- Moonology Oracle Cards
Each of these decks combines different types of cards that are created and designed by the authors.
For example, the Literary Witches uses illustrations of famous female authors throughout history. You can find in that deck the images of Emily Dickinson and Sylvia Plath.
How Many Tarot Cards Do You Pull?
There are two basic spreads to use when reading tarot cards, the Three Card and the Celtic Cross. The Three Card represents the past, present, and future, and each card pulled represents one of those states.
Additionally, the card can also represent mind, body, and spirit, depending on who is reading the cards.
Another way to pull cards could be by pulling six cards representing the six aspects mentioned before.
When it comes to the Celtic Cross, the pulling is a bit more challenging and tricky. During the Celtic Cross, each card keeps an assigned position, and each position means something.
There are ten cards involved, making it a lot more difficult because of the amount of information you need to remember and interpret.
Both the Three Card layout and the Celtic Cross are spreads for beginners, and as you get more experienced, you vary them, play with them, and combine them to create your spread.
Most experienced tarot readers use different spreading techniques and setups to create a unique feeling.
Remember that each card’s meaning and what they mean combined with others is more important than the layout.
The spreading can affect the meaning, but it is not the most important part of tarot reading.
What Is the Most Traditional Tarot Deck?
The most traditional tarot deck is the Rider-Waite deck. This deck was first published in 1909, and it has since become the standard for a tarot reading.
The author of this deck was A.E. Waite, and the Rider Company issued it, hence Rider-Waite. Pamela Colman Smith did illustrations for the cards.
Rider-Waite’s deck offers incredibly detailed symbolism in each card, even though the cards themselves are simple. This deck represents a separation from the Christian background that tarot used to have.
For example, one card from previous decks was “the Pope,” which does not exist in Rider-Waite’s deck.
This tarot deck is divided into two arcana: major and minor. Each arcana has a different set of cards with different meanings.
Each card is considered more powerful depending on the arcana it belongs to.
Here are the cards of Rider-Waite’s major arcana
1. The Magician
2. The High Priestess
3. The Empress
4. The Emperor
5. The Hierophant
6. The Lovers
7. The Chariot
9. The Hermit
10. Wheel of Fortune
12. The Hanged Man
15. The Devil
16. The Tower
17. The Star
18. The Moon
19. The Sun
21. The World
The minor arcana cards are divided into four sets of cards: wands, pentacles, cups, and swords. Each set of minor arcana cards include 14 cards each.
The minor arcana cards represent the day-to-day life of people. These interpretations could be work, responsibilities, relationships, and more.
Tarot is an exciting art and science that has millions of followers. It provides answers to many questions you might have, and it is a compelling way to understand the future.
Suppose you are interested in tarot reading and how to begin your journey into tarot. In that case, we recommend The Ultimate Guide to Tarot by Liz Dean.
Liz Dean’s book provides an excellent guide for beginners that look for the meaning of cards and the different spreading possibilities.
Additionally, the book delves into the history of tarot and the difference between major and minor arcana.
It is a perfect option for tarot students that are just beginning to study the art of card reading.